||US death metallers Arsis have announced Shawn Priest as the full-time replacement for recently departed drummer Mike VanDyne. Priest, who has toured with Arsis in the past, will be behind the kit for the band's upcoming fifth studio album.
Priest commented: "After several major tours with Arsis since 2008, I am more than happy to take the position of full-time drummer. These guys have become some of my best friends and based on the new material we've been putting together, I think the new record will be one of the best and most extreme Arsis releases to date. Get stoked people."
James Malone stated: "I am beyond thrilled with the pre-production for the new album and the addition of Shawn Priest on drums. Shawn has done many tours for Arsis and felt we it was time to give him the respect he deserves and bring him on as the full-time drummer. Shawn's input into the new songs has made them more intense than I could have ever imagined."
Bassist Noah Martin commented: "We weren't looking for a drummer who robotically plays a thousand miles an hour. Anyone who's seen us with Shawn knows he's capable of playing pretty much anything, but with tremendous feel. We've put him through hell, hiring him to fill in on multiple tours over the years, and we're glad we can welcome him to the fold. We have nine songs so far that we're continuing to tweak, and still tossing around ideas for cover tunes. We hope to create a pivotal album that sums up everything that Arsis was, is and will be."
The band has posted a updated pre-production version of the new track "Choking On Sand" online to show off Priest's punishing percussionary prowess, and to give fans a glimpse of what to expect on the upcoming album.